November 2004

Cyber News and Reviews is a monthly column published for parents, teachers & business owners featuring kids educational software reviews, business software reviews (small business & home business), games and entertainment articles, a free resource since 1995.


DreamWorks Shark Tale from AcTiVision and Macromedia Contribute 3

DreamWorks Shark Tale from AcTiVision

If you loved the new DreamWorks movie Shark Tale, then you and your kids will love the game by the same name from AcTiVision.  You'll find great 3D graphics, animation, music and realistic sounds while you interact with Oscar and his talking fish friends in this under sea adventure.

Join Oscar (the smooth talking little fish) in Reef City in his search for fame and fortune.  You’ll also meet Lenny, the only vegetarian shark in the sea.  Your goal is to help Oscar earn some clams (the currency of Reef City) so he can pay his bills (especially his rent) and help him attain his dream of becoming a famous fish.  You’ll also need to help get Oscar out of a lot of hot water (no pun intended) because he has a tendency to get into trouble.

Shark Tale is made up of 25 chapters each offering one of four types of game play: Adventure, Race, Fight and Dance. Adventure play allows you to swim through the city streets completing goals and collecting clams as well as building a reputation. Race play allows you to race through obstacle course streets on a Taxi Fish or Shark Fin.  Flight play is when you help Oscar fight and defeat those mean and dangerous Anemones.  And finally, Dance play allows Oscar to dance to the music to help gain fame.

In your journey, you’ll meet lots of characters along the way, many friendly and some dangerous.  Watch out for the Piranha, the Angry Puffer, the Jelly Fish, Crabs, Electric Eels and a few more.  The game offers six different areas to explore: The Brownstones (Oscar’s neighborhood), the Warehouse District (sleazy and slimy fish hang out here), The Sewers (below Reef City), Upper Reef City (where most things happen), The Shipwreck (the mean fish hang out here) and The Whale Wash (where Oscar works).

If you like 3D adventure games, and especially the Shark Tale movie, then roaming under the sea with Oscar for fame and fortune and laughing it up (when you’re not fighting for your life), is a great way to spend some fun time at your game machine.  The game offers lots to do with lots of challenges for anyone (kids and adults who act like kids).

DreamWorks Shark Tale is available for the Sony PlayStation 2 (street price $37.88), the Nintendo Game Cube ($37.88), Microsoft’s Xbox  ($37.88) and The Game Boy Advance ($29.88).

Macromedia Contribute 3

If you manage a Website and need to make some quick changes but you were not the Web designer and don’t have much control of the design, you may find Macromedia Contribute 3 the solution to your problem.  This very useful Web design tool, from the makers of Macromedia Studio MX, will let you make your changes and much more.  Now, with Macromedia Contribute 3 you can publish those changes to your Web space automatically without the need for an experienced Web design professional.  With Contribute, you can add, update and publish content to your Website in minutes without any HTML experience.

To use, first browse the page you want to update.  Next, edit your site within Contribute and then publish your changes with a single click of your mouse.  The program offers quite a bit of editing power.  You can create a new page, insert new content by adding text, images and tables, or modify existing page information. Contribute also allows you to add an MPG or MPEG movie and convert a document to Flash for viewing.

Macromedia Contribute 3 is a great program for anyone who needs to make a quick site change.  The program sells for $139.99 and will run on any multimedia PC, Pentium II 300 MHz or faster processor, 128 MB RAM with Windows 98/ME/2000/XP and a CD-ROM drive. It also runs on the Macintosh PowerMac G3 300 MHz or faster with 128 MB RAM and a CD-ROM drive.

Software Companies Mentioned

AcTiVision, Incorporated
3100 Ocean Park Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Phone: 310-255-2000

Macromedia, Inc.
600 Townsand Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Phone: 1-800- 457-1774